We had a great day today in the Lord’s house. The Lord allowed us to have 13 kids on the bus this morning with 2 of them being first time riders. We are so blessed to have them come each and every week. The “We Stand With God” rally is this Friday at the Liberty Plaza at the Georgia state capital. The rally is from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Make plans to join us and take a stand for God.
This morning for Sunday school we continued our lesson on the armour of God and we looked at the shield of faith. The Roman shield was curved so that they could fit about the soldier’s body and wide enough so that it could be butted-up to the shields of others when they were fighting. They were curved so that they could withstand hits from many different directions. Their shields weighed around 22 lbs. and it was made from 3 pieces of wood that were glued together and covered with canvas and leather, but was eventually covered in metal as the progression of the armour came along. There was a metal boss or an umbe in the center of the shield which was used as a punching weapon. It was a rounded piece of metal that stuck out away from the shield. The famous formation the Romans used was the “tortoise.” This formation protected solders from attack by interlocking their shields at the sides. Soldiers in the back line placed shields over their heads to form a protective shell over the top – protecting them from enemy archers. The shield of faith is very important to us as Christians. It is our first line of defense against Satan. Up until now, Paul’s description of the armour has been limited to items that we wear. We put on the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, and our feet shod with the gospel of peace. These pieces of armour hold themselves up. But, the shield is a different story. The Apostle Paul tells us the shield is something that we must take up, something we are required to raise. The shield does us no good if it’s lying on the ground of if it’s at your side. We just have to have faith that He knows best, and to have faith and trust Him. Does faith come easy or naturally? No, it is something we have to work at each and every day. Our shield of faith will deflect the darts the devil throws at us, the darts of doubt, lies, lust, worry, fear, bitterness, rebellion, etc. When Satan attacks we have to put our shield of faith up and trust God that He’ll take care of us and that He’ll help us defeat the attack of Satan. Remember, you’re not just fighting for yourself, you’re fighting for others.
This morning we have Bro. Sam Eastep and his family with us, they are missionaries to Mexico. Bro. Eastep preached for us this morning out of 1 Corinthians 15:1-4, 10, and 57 on “Passion: A Hearts Desire.” The opposite of passion is apathy. Too many times we get compassionate about temporal things instead of spiritual things. We need to preach the Word of God and not be ashamed. We need to take a stand for god and His work. If we don’t, who will? If we don’t get fired up, who will? Stand up today, because tomorrow may be too late. We need to be passionate about the gospel. How is our compassion of others? Do we desire to help those in need? We should be compassionate about the grace of God that enables us to serve God – Acts 22:4-5. Paul’s past could have been a stumbling block in His life. But he realized that God’s grace was sufficient for him and that is all he needed to overcome his past and to go on and serve God. His grace was enough to get him through and to let god of his past. We need to chunk our excuses and our past and rely on God’s grace. We should be compassionate for the God given victory we have in Christ Jesus. In Christ we are winners. When we train in a sport we train to be #1 not #2. In Christ we are always #1 because we are always winners, we are always victorious. We should live victorious not defeated. Rom. 8:31-39 – our team wins. God is on our side and we will win. We need to catch that attitude and realize we are conquerors. Get the victory and live the victory. Are you passionate or are you living a life of apathy? The choice is yours to make.
This evening Pastor preached on “Let Us Labor” out of Hebrews 4:1, 11; 3:7-19. We have to labour to have rest. We will never have peace if we never have war – Joshua 3:3. It was a simple as crossing over the Jordan River for them, but they wouldn’t. They didn’t want to go over because they didn’t want to have to fight the giants. Living a life of rest is trusting Him, but that is labor. Trusting God is not always easy and it’s always work. The biggest battle we fight in getting rest is our self. If we are going to rest in the Christian life it will be by the next verse Hebrews 4:12 “For the Word of God…” Rest is knowing that God has it all in control. Going through the hardest time and realize God is in control of your life. We need to do what we can do and let God do the rest that He wants to do. This is not easy, but it’s for our best. The Word of God should be active in our life. The Word of God has to pierce us; it has to get in us. If we are to enter into the rest it has to pierce us. The Word of God is powerful – 2 Timothy 2:15. Anybody can live the victorious Christian life, but nobody wants the Word of God to pierce them. Our thoughts that we entertain hinder the church. The thoughts of lust, or bitterness, or rebellion, etc. If we are filled with bitterness we are not going to enter into that rest. We have to labor; we have to work at it. We’re going to have to let the Word of God pierce us and get things out of our lives that needs to be removed. We will never rest if we don’t allow God to get things out o four lives that needs to be taken out so that we can be and do all that God wants us to be and do. Most Christians today are not real. Most people have something in their life that they don’t want to deal with. If we don’t deal with our thoughts or intents or marrow when they are little, we will deal with things that we never though and we’ll never be at rest. We cannot live the victorious Christian life because our mom or dad or pastor lived it. If we live victorious it’s because we labored and we wanted to live victorious. We are to live our Christian life in Him. Let God cut on you so you can enter into that rest.